Lensbaby Circular Fisheye: First Look

A refreshing look at a funky optic



If the fisheye lens above looks nothing like what you'd expect from Lensbaby, there's a good reason for that: In a departure from its unique modular optical approach to lens design, the Lensbaby 5.8mm Circular Fisheye ($299 at Adorama) is the company's first self-contained lens. Made for APS-C sensor-equipped Nikon and Canon DSLRs, the lens covers an 185-degree angle of view, projects a circular image, and manually focuses as close as 1/4 inch from the surface of the lens, making it the closest-focusing fisheye lens currently available.

In keeping with Lensbaby's approach to lens design, the lens has a polished interior barrel so light can bounce around and create interesting flare and reflection effects. And yet, sample images show that the lens is capable of sharp focus. In fact, Lensbaby claims edge to edge sharpness. The aperture is f/3.5-22, and a focusing scale is available to aid in focusing.


Sample image by Gabriel Biderman; provided by Lensbaby

The Lensbaby Circular fisheye is available in Canon and Nikon mounts, and is the first free-standing Lensbaby lens.

Key features:

  • Full Circle image
  • 185-degree angle of view
  • 5.8mm f/3.5-22
  • Close focus to 1/4 inch
  • Manual focus
  • Polished internal barrel

Sample image by Daniel Milchev


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